Job done on national features, Alan Oakley to head News Ltd’s iPad push

News Ltd has seconded one if its most senior editors to the role of developing its iPad apps.

Alan Oakley – a former SMH editor who this year drove the creation of News Ltd’s national feature section pullouts – has been given the new mission of developing the company’s digital offerings.  

Oakley became national features editor for News Ltd’s metro papers in March last year, and led the creation of the weekly pullouts. They include food supplement Taste, TV pullout Switched On and Music guide Hit.

The pullouts have become a major plank of News Ltd’s national sales strategy.

Feb: Mumbrella talks to sales boss Tony Kendall about the national pullouts:

Oakley’s new role is as group executive editor, digital platforms. News Ltd boss John Hartigan said: “I believe Alan is Australia’s best visual newspaper editor and his creativity and senior experience make him uniquely qualified for this important role within News Ltd.”

Oakley’s move has seen his deputy John McGourty step up to editor of national features. McGourty previously spent five years as assistant editor (features) on Sydney’s Daily Telegraph. He also worked in the UK on the Mirror and Sunday Express.

Claire Sutherland, currently chief of staff national features, has been appointed deputy editor national features. Sutherland was previously managing editor of The Herald Sun’s features department.

And Ian Hughes, previously integration editor of The Daily Telegraph, has been appointed production editor – group editorial, where he will oversee daily production of the national newspaper sections.

News Ltd has become increasingly serious about its digital offerings, with The Australian offering an iPad app from the device’s launch.

In other parts of Rupert  Murdoch’s empire, The Times and Sunday Times in the UK have already put up a pay wall, with the News of the World this week tipped to follow within months.


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